Catalysts play a vital role in speeding up reactions by reducing the energy input required for chemical transformations. In fact, approximately 90% of industrially produced chemicals rely on catalysts at some stage of their production. Take ammonia and hydrogen, for example, both crucial for the clean energy future.
- Empowering Future Leaders: Unveiling the Mysteries of Semiconductor Alloy Ordering at the µ-ATOMS Center
The Manipulation of Atomic Ordering for Manufacturing Semiconductors (µ-ATOMS) Energy Frontier Research Center, established in late 2022, is dedicated to unraveling the mysteries of atomic ordering in semiconductor alloys. This cutting-edge research center brings together a multidisciplinary team of experts to understand the fundamental scientific principles governing atomic ordering.
Symmetry is captivating, but asymmetry is also intriguing. In life, we witness some objects exhibit right-handedness while others showcase left-handedness. This exciting concept known as chirality refers to objects that cannot be superimposed on their mirror images. From seashells to glucose and amino acids, chirality permeates various aspects of nature.
The Center for Alkaline-Based Energy Solutions (CABES), a Cornell University-led Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) established in 2018, is advancing the scientific understanding of electrochemical energy conversion in alkaline media at the fundamental level. Using this new knowledge, CABES is aiming to solve the technological challenges that have hindered widespread integration of fuel cells into our energy infrastructure.
When we think about the kinds of fuels we encounter in our daily lives, the first that come to mind may be gasoline, propane, diesel, or similar. These every day fuels have a commonality: they're energy dense, meaning you can grill all afternoon or drive for hours. However, an additional commonality they share is that they are all derived from oil, a non-renewable resource that takes millions of years to form.
Quantum technologies have the potential to revolutionize conventional computing and communications technologies. By utilizing quantum mechanical principles, quantum computers can perform calculations that are impossible for classical computers, and quantum communication networks can transmit information with increased security.
In the pursuit of making renewable fuels from water, scientists at the Ćuk research group at CU Boulder have made a remarkable discovery: they can "hear" water molecules breaking apart during the initial stages of the process. By using a new technique, they have successfully identified the timing involved in the complex reaction. The Ćuk group is affiliated with the Center for Electrochemical Dynamics and Reactions on Surfaces (CEDARS), an EFRC that focuses on understanding and optimizing various catalysts for water splitting.
Scientists in the Fundamental Understanding of Transport Under Reactor Extremes (FUTURE) Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) have seen the intermixing of oxygen atoms between thin films as they such atoms are deposited on top of each other. Since this phenomenon occurs on the surface of a thin film, the deposited atoms are also known as adatoms.
The world we live in today is largely driven by advancements made possible by research into electronic materials. The computer that you’re reading this from is a complex machine constructed with a legion of transistors carefully moving information throughout the device. Those transistors are made of a material called silicon, a valuable semiconductor.
- Pioneering Energy Research and Cultivating Scientific Talent in the Molten Salts in Extreme Environments (MSEE) EFRC
Salts are used for a variety of everyday purposes, most commonly for seasoning foods, adjusting the pH of pools, and de-icing roads/walkways. However, a certain class of salts, molten salts, which are liquified at high temperatures, may also have unique energy storage applications. The Molten Salts in Extreme Environments (MSEE) Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) is at the forefront of molten salts research, dedicated to unraveling the mysteries of these ionic compounds and their behavior in extreme environments, including molten salt reactors, high-temperature systems, and corrosive conditions.
Artificial intelligence, machine learning, and edge computing have introduced new computational paradigms aimed at improving the quality of life. These advancements require enhanced performance from computer systems, particularly in terms of data storage and movement within microprocessors.
Dr. David Hurley, laboratory fellow and the director of the Center for Thermal Energy Transport under Irradiation (TETI), along with longtime Idaho National Laboratory (INL) colleague Robert Schley, led the development of the first-of-its-kind thermal conductivity microscope (TCM) from conception to operational prototype. The TCM is an instrument designed to measure the thermal properties of irradiated materials on micrometer-length scales. It is currently installed in the irradiated materials characterization laboratory (IMCL) of the Idaho National Laboratory (INL).
The MUlti-ScalE Fluid-Solid Interactions in Architected and Natural Materials (MUSE) Energy Frontier Research Center (EFRC) is based at The University of Utah. Since its inception in 2018, MUSE has aimed to develop new fundamental understandings of fluids confined within solid materials containing many interconnected pores, known as porous media. The Center’s research focuses on the rate of substance transport via flow through porous media and the interface dynamics between two immiscible fluids (e.g., oil and water).
Nancy M. Washton and Jeffrey G. Holmes, Co-editors-in-Chief
- Joseph Casamento, Center for Three-Dimensional Ferroelectrics for Microelectronics (3DFeM)
- Shunda Chen, Manipulation of Atomic Ordering for Manufacturing Semiconductors (µ-ATOMS)
- Zachary Diermyer, Multi-scale Fluid-Solid Interactions in Architected and Natural Materials (MUSE)
- Matthew Emerson, Molten Salts in Extreme Environments (MSEE)
- Baxter T. Flor, Center for Molecular Quantum Transduction (CMQT),
- Sallye Gathmann, Center for Programmable Energy Catalysis (CPEC)
- Md Azimul Haque, Center for Hybrid Organic-Inorganic Semiconductors for Energy (CHOISE)
- Andrea Hwang, Fundamental Understanding of Transport Under Reactor Extremes (FUTURE)
- Xavier Krull, Catalyst Design for Decarbonization Center (CD4DC)
- Mihail Krumov, Center for Alkaline-Based Energy Solutions (CABES)
- Linu Malakkal, Center for Thermal Energy Transport under Irradiation (TETI)
- James Stewart, Center for Electrochemical Dynamics and Reactions on Surfaces (CEDARS)
- Spencer Yeager, Center for SoftPhotoElectroChemical System (SPECS)
Disclaimer: The opinions in this newsletter are those of the individual authors and do not represent the views or position of the Department of Energy.